We have just bought a new oven ( new to us that is ) and it's got a fan . Normally I cook three loaves of bread in cast iron pans minus handles , at the same time 35 mins . Tried it with the new oven burnt bread Next batch cooked for 30 mins but left in the oven for 35 mins still cooked to much so this time heated for 25 mins and left in the oven for a further ten mins . Still over cooked .
Am I saving money cooking for less time or am I spending more money heating up the cast iron ?
Living in Anjou , France,
For the many not for the few
Well, assuming that your stove, oven, and furnace all are equally efficient and it is winter time so you are heating your house, I would say the cast iron and oven are about equal in energy use, so use the one that results in the best bread. A lot of energy may be used to heat up the cast iron, but you probably let the cast iron cool down in your kitchen so that heat energy is released to your house and (slightly) reduces the load on your furnace.
If you are using covered cast iron no knead style, just know that you can get great loafs with any covered containers. I bought six stainless steel steam table containers and use a sheet pan for my lid. Since they are rectangular I can fit more loaves and they are way cheaper than cast iron.
Perhaps the fan is making the whole oven more efficient at transferring heat to the objects in it. Once you get used to it and learn the new temperature settings (lower than before?) and timings (shorter than before) it may turn out to be super efficient! Or maybe the heat setting is just way off and that's why you were able to get it used....
Works at a residential alternative high school in the Himalayas SECMOL.org . "Back home" is Cape Cod, E Coast USA.
I use to build custom conveyor ovens to cook pizzas
a regular slate oven at 450 degrees takes 15 to 20 minutes
add air movement and it drops to 6.30 to 7.00 minutes
one set I built for University of Michigan football would do it in 5.00 minutes
so if you can drop the temp or turn off the convection would help
64 ..9'' pizzas in 5 minutes is fast cooking
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